Virgin Atlantic’s Nick Diesel Headshot CAE May 2024
Photo: Virgin Atlantic

As anticipated by the market. Virgin Atlantic Cargo has looked internally to find its new managing director, and has appointed Nick Diesel.

Mr Diesel is an old hand at Virgin, working for the company for nearly a decade, most recently as VP financial planning. Originally a management consultant with Deloitte, he has not worked in cargo before, but was briefly head of Connect Airways, an ill-fated consortium which was formed by Virgin and Stobart Air to buy UK airline Flybe – which then went into administration as Covid struck.

He has also worked on the expanded joint venture agreement with AF-KLM and Delta; was responsible for helping the airline through its £1.5bn recapitalisation, and led the team through the post-pandemic recovery.

He takes over from Phil Wardlaw, who took on the role in January 2022, working on new booking channels, and boosting the carrier’s customer focus. He leaves the carrier after 20 years.

Mr Diesel said: “Virgin Atlantic Cargo is one of the most important business units we have, and collectively this team delivered amazing achievements through the pandemic, enabling our recovery.

“As the world starts to normalise, every day they show an unrivalled ability to adapt to an everchanging world, while maintaining a focus on our customers to deliver the best service possible. The cargo division continues on a successful trajectory for 2024 and I look forward to building on this with the team.”

Mr Diesel will take up the role on August 4, while Mark Faulkner, head of cargo commercial, will be acting as interim MD from 3rd June to 3rd August 2024.

There had been industry speculation that Steve Buckerfield, Virgin’s long-standing head of cargo sales, may have got the job. But together with his wife in December he also set up a GSA, Azure Air Cargo, and tendered for a Virgin contract, sending the market into a bit of a spin about conflict of interests.

Comment on this article

You must be logged in to post a comment.